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3 BBL Stackable Fermenters

Stackable fermenters are a popular choice for professional and home brewers looking to upgrade their systems. 3 BBL Stackable Fermenters provide a balance of batch size and footprint for many small to mid-sized brewing setups. This guide will cover key details on 3 BBL stackable fermenter choices to consider from capacity to custom layouts.

Overview of 3 BBL Stackable Fermenters

Stackable fermenter systems allow efficiently utilizing vertical space by climbing upwards. 3 BBL units strike an ideal batch volume balance – larger than homebrew sizes but smaller than mass production. Key specs per 3BBL fermenter include:

Table 1: 3 BBL fermenter equipment specifications

Batch volume3 barrels or 93 gallons or 352 liters
Height~ 6 – 7 feet
Diameter~ 2 – 3 feet
Weight150 – 300 lbs when empty

Stacking multiples allows expanding capacity as needed while minimizing floor space. Units are modular for customized configurations. We’ll explore popular equipment choices next.

3 BBL Stackable Fermenters

Types of 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Systems

Many brewing equipment manufacturers offer 3 BBL stackable fermenter models from stainless steel to plastic. Let’s compare the main options:

Table 2. Major 3 BBL stackable fermenter types

Stainless steelStainless interior and exteriorDurable, sanitary, customizableExpensive, heavy
PlasticRotationally molded plastic or HDPEAffordable, lightweightScratches over time
MixStainless conical with plastic jacketBalance of cost and benefitsLimits customization

Now let’s look at key 3 BBL stackable fermenter system suppliers and components in more detail…

3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Manufacturers

Reputable brewery equipment manufacturers for 3 BBL stackable fermenters include:

Table 3: Major 3 BBL stackable fermenter equipment suppliers

SupplierOfferingsPrice Range
Ss BrewtechUni-tanks, Flex-tanks$$$
Spike BrewingUni-tanks, Flex-tanks$$
BlichmannStainless Uni-tanks$$$
Keg KingPlastic uni-tanks$

These companies provide both off-the-shelf and customizable 3 BBL stackable fermenter solutions. Uni-tanks feature an all-in-one stainless steel conical fermenter design whereas Flex-tanks utilize a plastic outer jacket around stainless. Costs scale from thousands for stainless models to budget plastic vessels. We’ll break down key design choices next.

3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Design Features

When selecting 3 BBL stackable fermenters, brewers can choose from conical or cylinder profiles and customize components:

Table 4: 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Design Choices

ShapeConical or cylindricalConicals for compactness, cylinders provide more uniform environment
ConstructionStainless, plastic, stainless + plastic jacketStainless most durable long-term, plastic most affordable
Temperature controlGlycol, steam, electricGlycol recommended for precise fermentation temperature management
AccessoriesThermowells, sanitary fittings, sampling valves, casters, ladders, etcDepends on process needs and degree of automation

Additional design factors relate to dimensions, capacity, and ergonomics:

Table 5: 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Sizing Parameters

ParameterTypical range
Height6 – 7 ft
Diameter2-3 ft
Capacity3 BBL (93 gal) each, scale by stacking
Stand height12 – 18 inches for cleaning access
Ladder width16 – 24 inches for ergonomic access

Ideally, stackable fermenters minimize footprint while allowing comfortable user access for loading, cleaning, checking Gravity/pH, and yeast harvesting.

Planning A 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Layout

Properly sizing and locating 3 BBL stackable fermenters is critical for an efficient brewhouse layout. Consider:

Table 6: 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Placement Planning

ParameterBest Practices
QuantitySize for max production volume, leave room to scale
LocationNear brewhouse for transfers, temperature controlled room preferred
FlooringSmooth, seamless, non-porous, with floor drains
Space2 ft clearance on all sides for access
StackingMax 3-high recommended without hoist system
HeightAt least 10 ft to top unit

Ideally position primary fermentation stacks near the brewhouse, with secondary aging stacks in a cooler room for lagering and fruit additions if applicable. Now let’s walk through the typical 3 BBL stackable fermentation process…

The 3 BBL Stackable Fermentation Process

Here are the key steps when fermenting with 3 BBL stackable tanks:

  1. Cleaning and sanitation – Clean and sanitize thoroughly per manufacturer instructions, typically with heat or chemicals
  2. Yeast pitching – Aerate wort thoroughly while transferring, pitch yeast based on cell count calculations
  3. Active fermentation – Control temperature profile throughout primary fermentation stage, normally lasting around 1 week
  4. Resting – Allow beer to rest after active fermentation, check gravity daily to confirm complete attenuation
  5. Transfer or aging – Either transfer to serving tank and carbonate, or transfer to secondary aging tank for lagering, fruit contact, etc.
  6. Dry hopping – For IPAs, dry hop during active fermentation for biotransformation or after for aroma

Utilize the sample valve to monitor conditions. Conicals allow harvesting yeast from the collection ball valve. Enjoy superior beer quality from fermenting in 3 BBL stackable tanks!

Maintenance For 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Systems

To sustain performance and longevity of 3 BBL stackable tanks:

Table 7: Maintenance best practices

CleaningClean thoroughly after each use with chemicals and/or 180°F+ water
SanitationRotate sanitizer weekly – iodine, peracetic acid, quaternary ammonium
GasketsReplace yearly or if any sign of cracks or wear
HardwareCheck fittings, valves, seals annually, replace if necessary
AccessoriesVerify condition of casters, ladder, jacket, probes, insulation
CalibrationRe-calibrate tank volume markings and probes every 2-3 years

Preventative maintenance minimizes risk of contamination or leaks while supporting precise brewing.

How To Choose A Reliable 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Supplier

When comparing 3 BBL stackable fermenter system manufacturers:

Table 8: Vetting and selecting reliable suppliers

ConsiderationBest Practices
ReputationChoose established vendors with proven track records
ReferencesAsk for and contact 1-2 brewery customer references
SupportEnsure full technical documentation and assistance
WarrantyLook for at least 1 year, ideally 2-5 years on tanks
Lead timeConfirm production and delivery timelines
CustomizationSee if they offer customized options vs only standard products

By validating suppliers upfront, brewers gain confidence in receiving high-quality 3 BBL fermentation equipment engineered for their unique needs.

Key Pros and Cons of 3 BBL Stackable Fermenter Systems

Table 9: Comparison of 3 BBL stackable fermenter advantages and limitations

Vertical footprint saves significant floor spaceHeight limits can require excavation or reinforced roof
Modular, expandable capacity by stacking moreStacking/unstacking requires equipment like pallet jacks or hoists
Customizable to unique process requirementsMore costly than single primary open fermenter
Independent fermentation temperature per vesselCleaning underneath tanks can be challenging
Flexible fermentation schedules by tankPotential temperature gradient top to bottom
Conicals allow yeast harvesting from collection ball valveHeavy to move once installed

With thoughtful design and placement, stackable fermenters maximize quality and efficiency.

3 BBL Stackable Fermenters


Q: What temperature control systems work best for 3 BBL stackable fermenters?

A: For precise temperature management, a glycol chiller system is recommended. Options include a central chiller with distribution to fermenters, jackets for cooling/heating, or chilling coils inside each tank. Glycol circulation allows dialing in temperatures within 1°F.

Q: How many 3 BBL fermenter tanks are optimal for a typical microbrewery to start with?

A: A good starting point is 2-4 primary 3 BBL fermenters, with capability to expand. This allows 1-2 week fermentation cycles and flexible production scheduling. Add 2-4 more units for secondary aging if incorporating lagering or fruiting stages.

Q: Should airlocks or blow-off tubes be used on 3 BBL stackable fermenters?

A: Due to large batch sizes, blow-off tubes are highly recommended during active fermentation. Attach to a collection vessel to avoid messy clogs or overflows which can lead to contamination and lost product.

Q: What design factors help simplify cleaning and filling 3 BBL stackable tanks?

A: Determine optimal stand height for pump clearance, include sample valves for monitoring, ensure adequate ladder width for body access, keep units on casters, and utilize sanitary fittings like tri-clover. Design your system for easy cleaning access underneath tanks.

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